Bite into something smooth and round… And, enjoy something that will wet your appetite.
Velvety almond cheese wrapped in creamy buttery broad beans and earthy celery coated in crispy nutty sesame and flaxseed.
This dish will burst your belief that you can’t have a yummy cheese as a vegan.
- When you’ve got a dinner party and want a cheese course that’ll get your guests yapping at the bits as you bring the port out
- When you’ve got a picnic and want bite-sized portions as you take a break from Rounders
- When you want a little extra treat to go with the sandwiches you’ve packed for your kiddie’s luncheon
Vegan Cheese Arancini was inspired by a garden potluck in the rolling hills of the Hampshire countryside.
This dish is a take on Arancini, which originate from Sicilian cuisine as stuffed rice balls coated in breadcrumbs. Arancini translates into “little oranges”, as it’s frying them which turns them golden orange. Originally introduced into Sicily by Arab invaders, they make the perfect high-octane snack and for great for picnics too. Traditionally, made using leftover risotto, Arancini come in various variations nowadays. This Vegan Cheese Arancini simply uses that idea and uses almonds, sesame seeds and broad beans.
Almonds, I purchase from a nifty Asian outlet in Hayes. It has an online presence too which can be found here – I love it because it is reasonably priced and tends to be good quality stuff which I use.
- 200g almonds, unblanched
- 200ml filtered water
- 1 tsp probiotic powder or 2 x 20 billion live cultures
- 1tbs garlic powder
- 1tbs onion powder
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ lemon, juice
- 250g broad bean seeds (fresh)
- 200g celery
- Pinch of salt
- 150g sesame/flaxseeds
- Soak the almonds in filtered water overnight.
- Boil some water. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Dunk the almonds into them and remove each almond to remove skin.
- In a high-speed blender, whizz together the almonds, water, and probiotic. Transfer the cheese to a bowl and cover with cling film, ensuring any air is removed. Place in the fridge for at least 3 or 4 days. The longer you leave the more mature the cheese will become.
- Transfer the cheese to a mixing bowl and add in the garlic and onion powders, salt and lemon juice. Leave to stand a few minutes.
- Measure about 29g of cheese and use both hands to form a ball. If it gets sticky, have a bowl of water to the side to help you. Continue until completed.
- Transfer the cheese balls to a Teflon sheet and onto a dehydrator tray. Dehydrate at 43 degrees for a couple of hours.
- Blanch the broad beans in boiling water for a couple of minutes and then place in cold water. Transfer to a high-speed blender. Add in the celery and whizz till fine. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
- Use your hands to wrap the broad beans and celery round the cheese. This could get messy. Return to the Teflon sheet. Repeat until completed.
- Set another Teflon sheeted tray to the side.
- Grind the sesame and flaxseeds and place in the coating separate bowl. Dunk the wet cheese balls in the coating and cover all sides to form the Arancini.
- Return the Arancini and dehydrate at 43 degrees Celsius for about 12 hours, turning every now and then.
- Serve the Arancini with crackers or bread, as necessary.